Sunday, June 27, 2010

Growing up and keeping cool!

Idaho in the summer is hot. Growing up keeping cool was pretty important (not just in the yearbook- 'Stay Cool for the summer' way either). We moved into our house on W Hudson in 1978. I was 4 Cort turned 2 that summer. The house had no lawn,  so we planted one. Growing up in that house was a lot of fun. Plenty of room for us and room to play. But the heat... We had A/C in the house, but outside it was warm.

One of the ways that we cooled off was swimming in the canal or ditch (whatever you want to call it). There was a canal that ran just behind our street, the Phyllis Canal. Our dad bought life vests for us and we all used to tube down the canal along about a quarter mile stretch. Then when we got older and were good swimmers we would go there on our own. It was a great way to keep cool. I know that canals are dangerous and I do not take my kids floating, like my dad did. But, when I was growing up- it was fun- we were safe- and we were smart.

There was also a place called "the ropes" a mile or so from our house where a few irrigation ditches converged. The trees had grown over and shaded it perfectly. It was only four feet deep or so and all sand on the bottom. It made the perfect place to swim and swing from the ropes that people had hung there. It was just the way you imagine it. Cool water- a shaded area - great summer fun.

Enjoy the hot days!

FYI- for disclosure sake- here is a PSA about canal safety

Friday, June 25, 2010

Where are you? Where have you been?

Where are you? Where have you been? You O.K.? The answer to this and many other questions is... 

I am here.  It's been a busy June. As you can tell by the lack of posting. Just a note about what is to come; posts. Bike riding- trips to KC- Train rides. But first let's just talk about Summer.

June is the first month of Summer. I know that it doesn't officially begin until June 21, but every since I was a kid in school June was the beginning of Summer. June, July, and August. Three months of freedom. 

Growing up my parents worked. So from a young age my brother and I were alone in the Summer. Not totally alone, my parents weren't neglecting us or anything. While we were young they would get someone to sit with us during the day, when they were at work. I remember for a few years it was Cindy Ashcraft. We rode our bikes to Woodside Racquet Club for swimming lessons. One of the summers when we rode to lessons they were widening Midland BLVD, in Nampa. I think it was in 1984, or so. If you were in Nampa then, you might remember it. It was a nightmare to drive/ride through- people even had bumper stickers that read "Pray for Me- I drive Midland BLVD". It was a pretty big project, they went from two lane, to the wide three lane road that it is today.

When we were a little older we were able take care of ourselves. They would take our baby brother to a sitter while they worked and then we stayed home. Our parents would leave us chore lists that we were expected to finish by the time the returned or we would lose privileges. Our list might include weeding rows in the garden, picking beans or snapping beans. We also might have to clean certain rooms in the house- so that mom & dad did not have to later. So we did our work and then played.  

One summer I remember that we spent a lot of time with Ryan and Josh Wilhelmsen. This is the summer that we learned about warming up hot dogs in the microwave and then eating them with BBQ sauce. They lived just up the street so it was easy to run up and play for a little while and then be home for mom & dad. 

Summer was fun. I guess that's why working all the time makes me long for the days when choosing where to ride my bike to was a major decision. 

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

iPhone 4...iOS4.. Some Thoughts

Yesterday Apple unveiled the new iPhone 4. It looks like a magnificent device. Redesigned- updated components and thinner to boot! Apple lists a lot in the tech specs on their site. There are many new features, too many for me to list them all, but I wanted to share the one that I think will change personal communication forever: FaceTime.

FaceTime is the video calling feature that Apple has added to the iPhone 4. It was Steve Jobs " more thing". This is revolutionary because it is the way that we have all dreamed of calling since we first saw Star Wars or whichever science fiction franchise was your favorite. Real-time video calling with no set up just two people with iPhones and *boom* they're talking face to face. In his presentation Steve Jobs talked about making this technology open source... this means that Google, Microsoft, or anyone who makes phones could incorporate it into their technology and suddenly there is a large group of people that are able to video chat. Or better said; communicate face to face.

Why does this matter? It matters because it does what technology is supposed to do. Make life simpler. You can make video calls now, it is just cost prohibitive to the average person and not too easy to set up. It's not too hard these days to see a Cisco ad with Ellen Page as she appears amazed that people are communicating with video across the globe. Well, iPhone 4 does the same thing without having to be a Cisco Admin.

Do I want an iPhone 4? Darn tootin' I do! Will it happen, that I can't say. Per AT&T I am not due an upgrade until next year. So probably not anytime soon. But I can dream!

Here is the iPhone 4 clip that was shown at the Apple WWDC (WorldWide Developer Conference) on June 7.

Monday, June 07, 2010

iPhone Day!!!

Today is iPhone day! What is that you might ask!! Well today is Apple's WorldWide Developers Conference. WWDC 2010 and on Monday morning Steve Jobs will give the keynote. There has been much speculation on what will be announced from iPhone 4.0 to the iPhone 4G or an update to the Mac or even Apple TV. I don't really have a prediction, I am just excited for new info from Apple. I have to admit that I am kind of a fanboy. If money was no object I would have a few more Apple products in my house for my wife and kids.

I won't get any new info until this afternoon. (I do work, you know!) So here is Apple's Steve Jobs talking about the iPhone & iPad not having flash- to wet your whistle.